Well, I got there in the end.

PS2500 · 329

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Offline PS2500

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on: July 07, 2024, 01:50:18 AM
The Eros tape preamp must have been my longest audio project by far. I started the build quite soon after receiving the kit, but every time I hit an obstacle, I'd set it aside for a day or two, and as I turned to other projects (audio and not-so-audio) those days would turn into months...eventually it became a multi-year journey. I posted earlier this year about the final problem, where I could only get ground hum out of my Technics tape deck. That was my fault, unsurprisingly, as the output cable + six-pin connector I soldered together for connecting to the wires from the headblock were reversed - signal to ground pins and ground pins to signal. Yes, I really am that crappy at deciphering a schematic.

So after resoldering that connector/cable...joy! Actual music. I think this deck and preamp are going to be very happy together.

Sadly, I don't see another Bottlehead kit in my near future. I went with a Japanese kit phono preamp for my turntables, and the other Bottleheads I once entertained hopes of purchasing (integrated or power amps) are climbing the cost ladder for my budget. A few years ago that might have worked, but the yen dollar exchange rate is painful right now, and it's unlikely to return to where it was. The only low-hanging fruit is the Speedball upgrade for the Crack.

Paul and Doc. B, thanks again for your patience and all the assistance.

Offline Paul Birkeland

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Reply #1 on: July 07, 2024, 05:38:13 AM
Don't beat yourself too much about the headblock connections.  A lot of those schematics were not particularly easily read when they were made, then after they are scanned and made into a PDF, things tend to get a bit worse. 

I'm glad you got it all up and running!

Paul "PB" Birkeland

Bottlehead Grunt & The Repro Man

Offline PS2500

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Reply #2 on: July 07, 2024, 04:50:16 PM
Thanks Paul

I made peace with the fact that I'll never be an electronics adept. I'm grateful to learn anything, even if it's the slow way. At the time I bought the Crack kit and my first R2R tape deck - perhaps 15 years ago? - I knew nothing at all about electronics and had never used a soldering iron. Everything I have learned since started there. R2R is a very good medium for realizing you're going to have to open a component up and do some things yourself! Now I'm reasonably comfortable doing a certain amount of repair work on other vintage audio.

Many aspects of electronics/circuits will remain a mystery to me - it's a field in which I'm more comfortable following detailed instructions to the letter than puzzling things out - but the building is fun, and I'm happy to learn little by little. When there are blunders like the ground/signal miswiring with my Technics, I remember them for next time.